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Posts from the Web Series Category

Image © Kevin Reome

Image © Kevin Reome

Oh. Muh. Guh.

You know when you see something so cool and so fun and so simple, you slap your head and think, “Why didn’t I think of that?”

Then you hate yourself for not thinking of it, and you get all down on yourself for being a loser, but then you remember how funny it was, and you smile, so you watch it again and laugh?

This is one of those things.

Hosted by Kevin Reome, Episode One of FaceTime Improv features the Divine Ms Messing facing off with the Talented Mr Razowsky. Click here or below to watch.

Image © Kevin Reome

Image © Kevin Reome

Guidance is one of the funniest, freshest web series out there. Davey Racine, Steve Barnes and Bruce Templeton are three inept guidance counsellors who struggle to connect with their students because their own needs constantly get in the way. We asked creators and stars Adam Cawley, Rob Baker and Pat Smith to school us. 

Image © Bite TV

P&C: How did you come up with the idea for the series?  

Adam: We we’re trying to come up with the premise for a film and I just started thinking… “Who are people that everyone has some experience with who are really relied upon?” Guidance counsellors seemed to have the most comic potential.

Pat: Then we got aligned with Jared, and our concept went from being a potential film, to being a web series.

Rob: I’m pretty sure it was my idea.

P&C: You’re all seasoned improvisers. How much of the show is scripted, and how much is improvised?

Adam: My portion was improvised off of beats. I told Sam, “This one is about me crashing a party,” or “This one is about you hooking up with girls.” And we’d just go. Sam was amazing. A great straight man with amazing reactions.

Pat: My scenes with Kayla were scripted, but we improvised within them. Our process on set was unlike anything I’ve ever worked on, in that we each were watching each other’s scenes and finding new moments and honing existing moments as we shot, from take to take.

As a result of having all of the writers on the floor, we were really able to explore and try and find what was best. Our scenes with Karen Parker on the other hand, were almost entirely improvised… we might have had some verrrry loose beats. All we really knew was, someone was getting fired.

Rob: I was working opposite the incomparable Ely Henry, which meant that I had to script every single word.

P&C: Do you look back fondly on your high school days, or is that something you’d sooner forget?

Adam: I loved high school. Except that time where I used a text book to cover my boner. Now I can afford to use cooler things to hide my boners.

Pat: High school for me got more fun as it went along. When I showed up I was super insecure about who I was and how I fit into this weird new place… but once I hit puberty and stopped hiding my boners things started looking up. By OAC, I found my groove. #LHS4LYFE

Rob: I miss all the boner jokes.

P&C: What did your friends say about you in your high school yearbook?

Adam:You know this isn’t a yearbook, just a collection of stapled-together foolscap.”

Pat: “Good luck in the Majors, because you’re a major league baseball player to all of us! Sweet Chin Strap!” – Can’t rock boners without a chinstrap!

Rob: You guys had friends?

P&C: Kids these days have a lot to deal with: cyber bullying, friends with benefits, internet porn, drug use… As people who grew up in a different era, how do you relate to what students are going through?

Adam: I don’t relate. I’m stuck in my high school experience. ICQ saved me from many awkward phone calls with girls. I could tell them I liked them, if they didn’t like me, I’d say “Sorry, my stupid brother wrote that, I don’t really like you”

Pat: I’m with Adam. ICQ was a saviour to me. I had so much more confidence on my computer after a 40 of O.E… I can’t imagine what kids have to go through today.

Remember those nights when you were 15 and went to the closest park with your buddies and drank malt liquor until you puked? Kids these days wake up the next morning to that posted on Facebook for all of the other kids to laugh at and tease. And then they have to face it at school. The self-awareness that kids must experience these days has to be tremendous. No thank you!

Rob: I’m going through all those things now!

P&C: Steve is powerfully sexual, Davey is eternally youthful, and Mr T is just so gosh darn positive. How much of a stretch are these characters for each of you to play?

Adam: Baker is a sexual deviant, Pat is a naive idiot, and I’m just a really good actor playing a character.

Pat: Baker rocks a constant up-tuck, Adam wanted to pitch Guidance as a reality series, I’m a naïve idiot who gets really great people to do scenes with him.

Rob: No stretch at all. (wink wink)

P&C: Looking back, if you could change one thing about your high school experience, what would it be?

Adam: Not be in the double co-hort.

Pat: Should have done steroids.

Rob: I’d graduate.

P&C: Do you remember your own Guidance counselor giving you any advice?

Adam: “Go into computers, please do something with computers!”

Pat: “You should take OAC Parenting. It will help boost your average.”

Rob: She said I should find a new school. (True!)

P&C: What did your parents say when you told them you wanted to be an actor?

Adam: …. Fine….

Pat: “Give it 5 years”… It’s been 6.

Rob: They didn’t believe me. Still don’t.

P&C: Any advice for students going back to school?

Adam: Master all the forms of social media. That way when you become so feared with your ability to ruin someone’s reputation, all the girls will want to give you an HJ.

Pat: Don’t be a dick.

Rob: Watch Guidance at guidance.bitedaily.com

 

Holy crap, we love this web series. Matt Besser‘s martini-dry humour will have you laughing out loud and curling up in the foetal position simultaneously.

This round, Matt and the kids of the Master Class take turns calling out the unusual thing. We’ll let you guess what that is.

Click below to watch all four episodes.

Shrink is an improvised web series starring Tim Baltz (Second City Chicago), created, edited and directed by Ted Tremper.

Baltz plays David Tracy, a doctor in training who gives free therapy sessions out of his garage. His “patients” include Rebecca Sohn, Jason Shotts, Colleen Doyle and TJ Jagodowski (whose episode made me spit steeped tea on my laptop).

Locked-off camera and spare set design allow the actors to shine. The performances are beautifully nuanced: funny, uncomfortable, and sometimes sad. Watch the whole series here.

I’ll admit it: when I signed up for a workshop with Matt Besser, I was scared shitless. Although I’m a fan of his work, I’d heard he had a reputation for being harsh.

Sure enough he had strong opinions, but isn’t that what you’re paying for in a master class? I learned a lot, and was grateful for the opportunity to learn from someone who’s done so much for improv.

When I came across this series of shorts produced by UCB Comedy, I just had to share. Besides being absolutely hilarious, they scared me just a little bit. Enjoy.

Here’s to the crazy ones. The misfits. The rebels…

No, not Einstein, Earhart or Ghandi; we’re talking about the people who make up The CenTre.

Created by Second City alums Rob Baker, Dale Boyer, Adam Cawley, Brian Smith and Chris Earle, Live From The CenTre is an improvised web series about, well, weirdos. It’s also laugh-out-loud funny.

The CenTre provides a platform for “alternative” businesses who want to make the world a better place, each in their own unique way. Things like GuyWhoBringsAGuitarToAParty.org. Parking Doctors. And the Animal Literacy Group.

Baker, Boyer and Cawley play a multitude of offbeat characters so convincingly, you’ll swear you’ve met some of them. Especially if you’ve spent any time in Trinity Bellwoods.

Smith meanwhile, plays voice of sanity and Host, B. Gordon MacKie. According to Smith, the series is “99 percent improvised.” Take that, Judd Apatow.

Since its debut March 1st, the show has already garnered over 40,000 views and is apparently a big hit in Europe. Which makes total sense really, when you think about it.

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